Sometimes injuries must tell their own tale.
The Motorcycle and Truck Accident Combo
When a Gwinnett County jury heard the case of an inexperienced motorcyclist who claimed to have collided with a loaded logging truck, the jurors had a big job to do. There were no eyewitnesses to the early morning accident. The truck driver wasn’t even sure that any contact between the vehicles had occurred. He said he was unaware of the incident. He had already parked his truck near his employer’s lot before he noticed other people racing to the motorcycle rider to render aid.
The rider of the motorcycle, who had been operating the motorcycle on a learner’s permit that limited the hours he could ride, brought suit in Gwinnett County State Court before Judge Joseph C. Iannazzone.
The Result: The Motorcyclist Suffering and Suing for Traumatic Injuries
The plaintiff claimed that he suffered severe traumatic injuries as a result of this collision. He said that the logger failed to stop, injuring him. His physical injuries included a comminuted fracture of the left tibia and fibula which required a surgical intervention to re-align the bones. The plaintiff also endured spinal burst fractures at lumbar vertebrae 4 and 5 of the low back. These fractures also required surgery to fuse the vertebrae together. Additionally, the plaintiff also had a collapsed lung following the accident. He developed a blood clot – or pulmonary embolism – which was diagnosed and treated before permanent injury could occur.
The driver of the defendant truck denied any collision. He did admit that he’d heard a noise and felt something at the time of the collision, but could not be certain what it was. He argued that the newly permitted motorcycle rider merely became frightened at the sight of the truck and over-reacted laying his bike down. Defendant pointed to a 25 foot scrape on the road from the motorcycle.
The defendant also denied fleeing from the scene of the accident. He claimed to have parked the truck in front of his employer’s lot and immediately walked back to the scene.
An Accident Lawsuit with No Witnesses and a Defendant Who Left the Scene
With no eye witnesses to help establish the facts, the jury heard expert witnesses who outlined the forensic evidence left on the bike itself. Not only was the metal of the motorcycle crimped in a way that denoted a collision, but there was also blue paint matching the truck on the bike itself.
According to medical professionals, bone does not splinter and break in multiple directions unless it is subjected a very forceful impact. The nature of the injuries evidenced that the plaintiff’s bones had been subject to considerable force and energy consistent with a high-impact vehicular collision.
In this case, a man in his early 20s was left crumpled in the roadway with a motorcycle atop him. This man had limited earning ability to begin with, not having completed high school. Now, under treatment by a pain management specialist, he was no longer able to work at all because of his need to rely on pain medication. His injuries were severe enough that his spouse claimed that he was no longer able to perform sexually, leading her to sue for loss of consortium.
The Awarded Compensation
The jury deliberated for only six hours before returning a verdict awarding the plaintiff $820,000 and his spouse $10,000 for loss of consortium.
Our justice system works to protect us all. But it only works if we allow it to. Had this young man considered himself to be at fault for being an inexperienced motorcycle operator, and not brought suit, he would be simply a broken human with few alternatives for a productive life. Instead, he allowed the jury to weigh the evidence and he has the means to seek a better future.
If you’ve been hurt due by a careless or negligent driver you may be able to recover in court. At The Millar Law Firm we regularly review cases like this one and are often able to make the difference in the way a life can play out, thanks to the law of the land. Call or email us today. We’d like to evaluate your case.
LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The above article is a factually-accurate case history of an actual previously litigated or settled Georgia case. The case was reported on in local media and/or legal reporting services and it was not handled by The Millar Law Firm. However, we think our current and prospective clients may find this information interesting and informative as the case is factually similar to cases our office routinely handles. Please be advised that The Millar Law Firm makes no guarantees your case will have a similar outcome, as past results of our firm or of other lawyers and law firms are not guarantees of future performance.